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24 February 2018 Venue Vale Park Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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Match Previews

MATCH PREVIEW: Port Vale vs Newport County

23 February 2018

As Neil Aspin and his players prepare to face Newport County in Sky Bet League Two on Saturday, here is everything you need to know ahead of the fixture...

Fixture: Port Vale vs Newport County

Competition: Sky Bet League Two 

Date: Saturday 24th February 2018

Kick-off: 3:00pm

Venue: Vale Park

 

Preview

Port Vale will be hoping to avenge last weekend’s defeat at Swindon Town as the Exiles make the trip to Burslem from South Wales.

Still without a win in 2018, Neil Aspin’s men will be looking for an important set of three points on Saturday to pull them further away from danger in Sky Bet League Two.

When the Valiants travelled to Rodney Parade back in November the spoils were shared. Anton Forrester fires home a late equaliser on that occasion, but he and his teammates will want to go one better this time around.

 

The Opposition

Newport come into this game in disappointing form, with their last win in any competition coming back on the 19th of January when they edged past Crawley Town in Sky Bet League Two.

Despite that, the Exiles did show their class to earn an Emirates FA Cup Fourth Round replay with Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley, a tie in which they fell to a 2-0 defeat.

Now lying 14th in the league, Newport’s early promise has dwindled somewhat. However, Michael Flynn’s men are still only eight points away from a play-off spot, so a win could rekindle their season. 

 

One To Watch... Padraig Amond

The 29-year-old striker made the move to South Wales for an undisclosed fee in August 2017, leaving Hartlepool United with 14 goals to his name from 49 appearances.

Having began his career in his native Ireland, he has plenty of experience in the Football League with spells at Accrington Stanley, Morecambe, Grimsby Town and Hartlepool.

So far this season, he has been an ever present in a Newport shirt, racking up 42 appearances in all competitions to date. During that time, he has scored on 12 occasions, including the goal which sent Tottenham Hotspur to an FA Cup replay.

 

Talk

Neil Aspin: “There is a lack of confidence and results when you're not winning games. It's difficult as a manager when you're not winning games and of course you feel the pressure, because we're all anxious to get that result.

“Until we get a win then that pressure will continue to build. We are desperate for a win but that desperation can't come across in a game, you've got to do your jobs properly and we've got to cut out the mistakes we make at the moment."

Michael Flynn: “They gave us a very tough game when they came here and they scored late in that match. They have an attitude that never says die and they only lost by a small margin to Swindon so it shows they have goals in them.

“It’s going to be a tough game, just because they are in the bottom half doesn’t mean we are entitled to get three points against them.”

 

Team News

Vale remain without long term absentees, Kjell Knops and Adam Yates, but Antony Kay also joins them on the treatment table as he will undergo an operation on a hernia. 

David Worrall, Marcus Harness and Tyrone Barnett were all substituted through injuries during the clash with Swindon, meaning they could be doubtful for this game.

As for Newport, they will be without Scott Bennett as the defender continues to nurse a thigh strain that could keep him out of action for up to eight weeks.

Captain, Joss Labadie, is also ruled out after picking up his tenth yellow card of the season in last weekend’s draw with Notts County, meaning he will serve a two-match ban.

 

Coverage

Follow The Vale will be providing full 90 minute commentary from the match, while the Port Vale Twitter and Facebook feed will be providing live updates for the entirety.

There will also be build-up to the game with the official Snapchat account: officialpvfc.

Reaction will be available on the official website post-match, as well as on YouTube, iFollow and social media.

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Match Reports

MATCH REPORT: Port Vale 0-0 Newport County

24 February 2018

Port Vale played out a goalless draw at home to Newport County in Sky Bet League Two on Saturday afternoon, with Michael Tonge going the closest to netting a winner as he struck the post in the first half. Shawn McCoulsky also had an opportunity to seal three points for the Exiles late on, but he failed to capitalise and the spoils were shared.

In terms of action, the opening exchanges provided very little as both teams jostled for possession, but it was Vale who created the first opening on seven minutes. David Worrall did well to skip down the left flank before sending a cross in towards Tom Pope, but his glancing header fizzed wide of the far post.

With 11 minutes played, Newport spurned a golden opportunity after a long throw-in routine fell kindly to Mark O’Brien and he could only send his effort over the bar from six yards. Up the other end almost immediately after, Tonge fired a curling effort against the post with Joe Day at full stretch following an impressive run from Pope.

Vale continued to press for an opener and they began to look the more threatening of the two sides, with Cristian Montano forcing Day into a save as he powered a Tonge cross on target via his head on 16 minutes. During the same move, neat build-up between James Gibbons and Pope saw the latter flick an effort on target, but it was comfortable for the goalkeeper.

Another patient passing move lead to another opportunity after 21 minutes, but after finding space in a central area, Luke Hannant saw a strike ricochet off a defender and wide of the target. Frank Nouble then set his sights on goal for Newport four minutes later, but Danny Pugh did well to deny him with a brave block.

That proved to be the final real chance of the first half, but Neil Aspin opted to bring on Ben Whitfield at half-time to add to Vale’s creativity and he was involved in a swift attack on 52 minutes as Tonge stabbed a Pope cross wide of the target from inside the area. Nouble then wriggled his way into a shooting position three minutes later, but Kyle Howkins managed to clear.

Ryan Boot was then called into action with 56 minutes played to deny the visitors twice in quick succession, firstly parrying a strike from O’Brien away from goal before reacting quickly to get back to his feet and stop the follow-up from Nouble. The ball then bounced around in the Vale area, but Montano was on hand to clear upfield.

It was then the Valiants’ turn to go close on 62 minutes as Whitfield broke into the area, but after being crowded out, the ball became loose and Worrall was able to pick up the pieces. He adjusted his body before sending a low strike towards goal, but Ben White slid in to block and thwart the midfielder. Whitfield then tried his luck from range three minutes later and it flew wide of the post with Day scrambling.

As the tempo of the game started to increase, Vale saw two chances come and go within a matter of seconds during the 75th minute. Whitfield picked out Pope with a deep cross and he could only head into the arms of day, but the midfielder had a shot of his own shortly after and the goalkeeper was not required on that occasion.

With nine minutes remaining, Newport could have secured a win as the ball dropped to McCoulsky inside the area. The substitute had time and space to get his shot away, but with only Boot to beat, he failed to hit the target and Vale were able to breathe a sigh of relief.

Worrall was then presented with a clear-cut chance himself in the 89th minute, but his half-volley flew narrowly over the bar. In stoppage time, Pope went down under a challenge inside the area as he tried to get on the end of a Worrall free-kick, but the referee was unmoved and the penalty appeals were waved away.

Team Line-Ups

Port Vale: Boot, Gibbons (Whitfield 45), Smith, Howkins, Davis, Montano, Tonge (Harness 82), Pugh, Worrall, Hannant (Barnett 60), Pope.

Unused Substitutes: Lainton, Howe, Raglan, Forrester.

Newport County: Day, Pipe, White, O’Brien ©, Demetriou, Butler, Tozer, Willmott, Dolan, Amond (McCoulsky 76), Nouble (Hayes 76).

Unused Substitutes: Bittner, Jackson, Reid, Osadebe, Sheehan.

 

Attendance: 4,013 (288 away).

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